I saw The Lion, The Witch & the Wardrobe last night. For the first time, ever, I actually waited five days to see a movie based on one of the books I loved so much growing up. Let it be noted that I was at all three Lord of the Rings movies at midnight when they opened.
Although I had high hopes for the Narnia movies, I expected to be disappointed. So it was with trepidation that I read the reviews last week. After which, I started to hope. Maybe this movie wouldn’t be butchered and left for dead the way the Earthsea miniseries was. Maybe it would be good!
And it was! I loved it! I loved every minute of it! Narnia was exactly as I pictured it! Harry Gregson-Williams wrote a brilliant soundtrack that worked perfectly with the movie. The child actors chosen all looked like they were actually related, and did a wonderful job with their roles. The screenplay followed the book. Aslan looked real. The White Witch was actually better than anything I could have imagined, with brilliant, brilliant fashion and hair styling.
It looked like I imagined it, which is to say, the forest shots all looked like they could have been done in British Columbia. But even Cair Paravel, the Stone Table, Lantern Waste – everything was as I always thought it would be.
And very few liberties were taken with the script. There was a bit too much character development, and too many mentions of “being a family”, but it’s 2005, not 1945, and I grudgingly accepted that those extra lines were necessary.
I was delighted with the way the movie was done. That’s all. Much work went into it, and I think someone, along the way, must have loved Wardrobe the way that Jackson loved Tolkein’s books. That’s the only explanation for why it was as good as it was.
I’ll probably see it again in theaters, but that’s because it was really really good. For all those who were dubious about this because it was a movie made by Christians, see it anyways. I love the books more than most people, more than I should, at twenty-seven, and I enthusiastically approve of what was done.